Friday, September 30, 2016

September 30th 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Mount Escapes
Partner: Josh J

Conan went over some different mount escapes which broke the monotony of the techniques of the week. We did some extra hip escapes and bridging to coincide with the techniques he went over.  We went over pushing on the hip and using the thigh to push the foot into being trapped.  I do the second one to get to deep half often, I don't do the first one that much as I'm not that confident in it.

Rolling: Mount
Rolled With: Josh, Jesus

Gave both Josh and Jesus pointers on mount top and bottom.  From the bottom my advice is to not reach for anything, protect yourself, if you're going to grab an arm hold it to your body, and be prepared to attempt 3 different escapes in a row.  From top I'm always attacking, trying to isolate an arm, move up, and float.

Office Hours Partner: Jesus, Josh

Went over loop choke with Jesus as well as some guillotine defense fundamentals.  We rolled a few times and I helped him through a couple of armbar setups.

Rolled With Josh a few times and felt like arm drags were the right thing to do. Kind of strange since my normal arm drag is from 2 on 1.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

September 29th 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Double Leg, Mount: Upa Escape, Cross Collar Choke
Partner: Justin

It's a little difficult to double leg Justin as he is shorter than me but also stays pretty low to the ground with the stance that he takes.

Rolling: Mount, 8 Minute Defense Drill
Rolled With: Justin

Bhuvana and Byrav were also in class but had to leave after the first round of rolling. So we introduced Justin to the 8 minute drill. 2 minutes each on the bottom of mount, back mount, side control, and turtle then switching to the offense for the other 8 minutes.

He seemed a little concerned with his progress. I told him to read the beginning of my blog and see how I felt starting out.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

September 28th 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Mount: Upa Escape, Cross Collar Choke
Partner: Tim, Chris

Small class today but Jerad shared a lot of good information on the cross collar choke.  We did it both the standard way with both palms up and then the way Jerad likes to do it with both palms down and thumb inside the collar.  I've had some success with this with this version in the last several months where I've only completed the standard version maybe once or twice in live rolling.

The best detail that he covered was that when he begins the choke after establishing his grips he keeps his arms straight and leans forward.  I thought I was supposed to bend my elbows and crunch in but this is more like the baseball bat from knee on belly.

Rolling: Mount, Free Rolling
Rolled With: Tim, Jerad, Chris

Generally I'm feeling really good lately with my mount top and bottom.  I've mentioned this before but I think it's been developing for the better part of a year.  I think I still get more submissions from side control.  Back mount is something I want to start focusing on soon, as in getting to the back and finishing from there. 

Jerad and I had some good tough rolls.  I tried my best to avoid his mount and we went back and forth from a quarter guard to half to mount several times and then had my back for a while.  I feel better about my performance with him, at least I am attempting different things and not falling into the same repetition of movements like I felt before.

Went over some passing with Tim.  Talked a lot about grips and grip fighting and what to do at the start of a roll.  Also talked a little no gi passing and what I like to do without any pant grips. 

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

September 27th 2016 - No Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Crucifix: Entry from Turtle, RNC
Partner: Jesus

Great class today on the subject of crucifix which I'm always interested in learning more about.  I wonder if it would be a more popular position if it scored points in tournaments? 

Greg had us get to the position by getting a harness grip and then using the near knee (rather than the one that would be used as a hook in back mount) to pry their elbow from their body.  From there the other foot slides along your knee to drag their arm into the crucifix.  Greg wanted us to stay on top from here and setup the RNC.  I thought we were going to try to roll them over.  The RNC is very strong here and I'm liking it a lot.

Rolling: Turtle, Up/Down/Out Closed Guard
Rolled With: Jesus, John, Tim, Mike A

Greg had us start from turtle with a harness and then turtle with the knee isolating the arm.  It was very difficult being on the bottom, but I think it's the best way to give the person on top a chance to attempt what we worked on.  I escaped to guard a few times, got caught in back mount a few times.  From the top I wasn't able to catch anyone in the crucifix/RNC, everyone did a good job of monitoring their elbows and they were most likely expecting it. 

Had some good battles from guard and some close calls.  Mike and I had an entertaining match that went back and forth with guillotine attempts to butterfly sweeps to leg lock battles to finally me sitting on my butt and it being considered a sweep for him. 

Office Hours Partner: Mike

We rolled a couple times after and had a great time.  I was close to a knee bar at one point before he triangled his legs.  Afterward he showed me that I should go for the heel rather than messing with the bend of his knee, it makes total sense and I hope I can change that habit in the future.  I also attempted a heel hook from top half guard setup that I'm liking a lot.  Haven't been able to finish it yet but it seems close to something that I can use.  We also discussed kimura from bottom half guard which is still a work in progress for me.  I'll get to the position but often get stacked or get it reversed on me. 

Saturday, September 24, 2016

September 24th 2016 - Open Mat

Open Mat
Rolled With: Clint, Nick, Kevin, Frank, Bhuvana, Tom
Game Plan: Half Guard

It was a good day on the mats. I had quite a few tough rolls.

I told Clint that he had gotten a lot better since rolling with him 2 weeks ago. He was defending my NS Choke well and defending better in general.

Rolled with Kevin for the first time and it's been a long time since I have felt so outclassed athletically.  I did some good things (waiter sweep, back take) but had a hard time maintaining good positions that I ended up in. Makes me want to work on no gi and wrestling more.

Felt like I rolled well against Nick and was effective with my over/under. I got the impression a couple times that somehow he was making me make mistakes somehow. Difficult to explain but there were a couple of techniques that I'm good at that I didn't do quite as technically due to slight adjustments on his part.

Drilled cross guard with Tom giving him a crash course on it. He took to it pretty well, I may have talked him into making it his guard.

Frank and I rolled a few times and then worked on knee on belly and NS choke defenses.

I worked on quite a few things with Bhuvana and rolled a few times. She's at the point where she's overwhelmed with potential plethora of techniques that she could work on. We did loop choke, NS Choke, and talked a lot about getting a good underhook.

Friday, September 23, 2016

September 23rd 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Standing RNC Defense to O-Soto Gari, Kneeling Guard Break to Single Under Pass, Defense with elbow stiff arm
Students: Craig, Jeff, Jesus, Tyler (New)

Got to teach again this morning and had a decent turnout.  I duplicated Wednesday's warm-up and had them work on sit-out and sprawling. 

At the end of class while stretching I've been asking if anyone learned anything today.  Everyone usually says yes, but not everyone always answers when I ask "what?"  Everyone came up with something today which included: "Learned to pick a side with my head when doing the sitout", "Lead with my hips instead of my head when passing butterfly guard to avoid loop chokes."  Makes me feel like I did some good instructing.

Rolling: Guard, Free Rolling
Rolled With: Jesus, Jeff

Felt like loop choke is coming back for me as a viable technique, I've been sneaking it in a lot lately from butterfly guard.  I think the big thing is that I'm also more willing to roll with it to make it tighter where I used to try to stay upright in guard. 

Helped Jeff with defending from side control and mount and enforcing that when defending he needs to try to get back flat on his back.  This was quite an epiphany for me when I was told that I actually didn't want to be on my side all the time in side control, because it exposes your arm and back to attacks.  Of course in the process of bridging and hip escaping you will be on your side momentarily but you don't want to hang out there.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

September 22nd 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Standing RNC Defense to O-Soto Gari, Kneeling Guard Break to Single Under Pass
Partner: Jordan

Apparently I missed an arrow on the curriculum and taught the wrong self defense technique yesterday.  We were supposed to work on the RNC defense since we did the other one a couple weeks ago to keep them closer together. 

Jordan and I took some liberties with the techniques and worked on the knee over pass and split pass after going over the single under pass several times.  We only started the split pass after he told me to do my worst to make him uncomfortable during the pass.

Rolling: Closed Guard, Guard Shark Tank for me
Rolled With: Jordan, Evan, Bob

After our first couple rounds of rolling, the herd thinned out because people had to head back to work.  Greg suggested that I play guard and have Evan and Jordan try to pass it over and over.  Not sure how many rounds I did but it did the trick of getting me a good workout.  I did some good work with cross guard and 2 on 1 as well as throwing in some open guard and hip bump and scissor sweep attempts.  A couple times I ended up in triangle position and my partner postured way up.  I used the hand stand sweep method that I've seen Mike do to great effect.  I think this may be a new addition to my guard game.  Afterward Greg said he was happy that I was incorporating the triangle into my cross guard and thought it would help to improve my omoplata game.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

September 21st 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Bent over Headlock Escape to Tani Otoshi, Kneeling Guard Break to Single Under Pass, Defense with elbow stiff arm
Students: Tom, Daniel, Ben, Evan

During warm-up I had them work on the sit-out which progressed from an individual exercise, to a partner exercise from headlock position, to attempting a shot, getting sprawled on and then completing the sit-out.  This is something that I want to improve on for myself so hopefully they got something out of it too.

Tips on techniques:
  • Tani Otoshi: One of my favorite throws in theory but I haven't hit it often in live rolling.  The biggest improvement that I see is when people are told to guide their partner around in a circle to their back.
  • Single Under Pass: Put an emphasis on separating the steps into 3 specific movements.  Moving straight in to lift their hips off the floor, turning 90 degrees, then moving straight forward to move their legs to the ground.  Deviating from that can give the guard player some leverage.
We had some time so I showed the elbow stiff arm if the passer isn't tight enough with their elbow.  So hopefully the importance of keeping your elbow tight during that pass made sense.  The elbow push is also a very useful technique to know for side control escapes.

Rolling: Guard, Free Rolling

Sat out a few rolls and coached and then was able to get in some rolls myself.  Gave pointers where I could.  Saw Daniel in an omoplata and told him to do a barrel roll to sweep.  He made the comment, "so that's what that's all about." Helped Evan a bit with the basics of half guard and getting on his side.  I was able to hit a spiral armbar from side control that I had a textbook setup on so pretty stoked about that.

Office Hours Partner: Daniel, Tom

Rolled with Daniel a few times and apparently he accidentally opened up some stitches that he's been dealing with.  Hopefully he'll be able to get back on the mats soon.  We discussed north/south choke a bit because he said he's been caught with it lately.  Worked on cross guard and shin on shin to single x with Tom after that.  I'm trying to help him find his guard.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

September 20th 2016 - No Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: X-Guard: Entry, Technical Stand-up Sweep, Toe Hold
Partner: Ben, Tim

Great class today, it's been a while since I've worked on x-guard.  We did the entry from an attempted butterfly sweep where they base out one leg.  I felt pretty natural and strong for me to get into the position.

The stand-up sweep is something that I use all the time, usually in transition from single leg x to full x.  I really like toe holds, but don't get to practice them that much and they aren't covered in class often so it was great.  

Rolling: KOTM Butterfly

Great rolls with everyone. Had some trouble with engaging from butterfly guard. Everyone was doing well with hand fighting and posture.

Had some especially tough rolls with Mike. They're physically and mentally taxing. Trying to pass takes time as I don't want to get caught in a trap but I also have to be on the offensive. From the bottom I end up in deep half often and usually put myself in trouble when going for a waiter sweep. Greg gave me advice to go for single leg x heel hook when he starts to go for knee bar. So I tried it but Mike heard what I was going to do and countered that.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

September 17th 2016 - Open Mat

Open Mat
Rolled With: Clint, Justin, Andy, Ryal, Nick
Game Plan: Active Guard, Wrestling during Scrambles

Had a good, exhausting open mat and may have helped a few people along the way. I did a good mix of gi and no gi.

I went over NS Choke with Clint and showed Justin how to escape it.  A new setup for it has presented itself to me as well recently. Sometimes in side control as I'm trying to setup a kimura I'm able to get their head on my thigh it gives a path to a deep NS Choke.

Fought through a couple of good scrambles from Justin and Clint. They both were able to escape my mount at one point by underhooking my leg. Normally I would attempt a mounted triangle but they both were able to avoid that. I might ask Jerad if he has a solution to this.

Andy had me worried about some guillotines that I had to hand fight and wait out.  Played some deep half as well and had stand off.

With Ryal I experimented with kimura from bottom half, I couldn't step over his head like I was hoping for but I was able to sweep with it.

Toughest roll of the day was with Nick I was already tired but he insisted on one last roll. I think he had an agenda of setting up a calf cutter or at least that's what he ended up with.

Friday, September 16, 2016

September 16th 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: O-Goshi, Closed Guard: Cross Choke, Armbar
Partner: Mike (Visitor)

Worked with a visitor today from Alvarez BJJ ( in Texas.  Had a good time training with Mike as he had a great attitude and was up and ready to go at 6:30 AM.  Conan had us do a different armbar setup where we climbed up their back and secured our leg on the shoulder before putting the leg over for the armbar.  I didn't feel like I was very good at it. 

Rolling: Guard, Free Rolling
Rolled With: Mike, Craig

From the bottom I played closed guard and some 2 on one.  I didn't have much success with the techniques of the day though.  There were a couple times where I swept Mike, but he was pretty good about acting right away to start recovering guard and not settling.  He said that he has only trained for a year but he felt much better than that. 

Office Hours Partner: Mike

Conan, Mike, and I rolled a few more times after class.  Mike's training for a tournament soon so we went over some of his game plan and drilled a few things.  He was also interested in my North/South choke and we worked on that for a bit.

We talked about competing and visiting other schools and how a school can have a game or technique theme revolving around what the instructor is good at.  I've said it before but one of the best things about Jiu-Jitsu as that you can travel and walk into a club and feel welcome.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

September 15th 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: O-Goshi, Closed Guard: Cross Choke, Armbar
Partner: Justin

Small class today for a Thursday.  Still got some good work in and we welcomed back Anthony after a several month hiatus.  My neck took a lot of punishment today so much so that Greg was feeling sorry for demonstrating on me so much with the cross choke.

Tips on Techniques of the week:
  • O-Goshi: Greg stressed on getting your feet close together.  This was a change for me moving from Hapkido to BJJ and Judo.  We did a lot of our throws with our feet wide.  I feel like it's no big deal now but it did take some time to get over.
  • Cross Choke: I've had some success with using the princess wave motion along with turning my shoulders to get my second hand in.  Also, imagine doing this technique correctly every time we do chokes from the guard ab exercise during warm-up.
  • Armbar: Greg used a 2 on 1 grip to setup the armbar which opens up so many possibilities in itself.  Even if you don't get the armbar this is a great control.

Rolling: Guard, Free Rolling with Stand-up
Rolled With: Justin, Anthony, Lucas

It felt pretty humid and stuffy today and it was affecting everyone.  I went for both the armbar and the cross choke but decided to go for pendulum sweep a couple times instead.  Used some loop chokes and some omoplata sweeps.  Messed up one time where I should have gone for the sweep but wanted the omoplata submission more, created a little scramble and saved myself with an elbow push.  Did a great drop seonage but took a knee to the forehead after my partner fell.  Didn't affect me at the time but I think it probably left a mark.

Office Hours Partner: Justin

We talked about some grip fighting and he marveled at the cross sleeve kimura grip break.  I agree it's something everyone should know.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

September 14th 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: O-Goshi, Closed Guard: Cross Choke, Armbar
Partner: Tom

Small class today so we had an abbreviated warm-up and technique portion.  We each went over different setups for the armbar.  We worked on O-Goshi a few rounds and then I showed Tom the Tai Toshi that I've been working on.  It felt pretty good in practice. 

Rolling: Free Rolling Starting from Standing
Rolled With: Tom

I made the request to work on more stand-up sparring in the smaller classes like this one since we have the room and we're not doing it that often.  Jerad thought it was a good idea so we pretty much did tournament style matches starting from the feet and then going to submission.

I didn't do the best standing or to rephrase Tom did quite well.  I was a little focused on trying to get to the Tia Toshi position and Tom does a good job of tripping and getting a single leg.  Makes me want to do more stand-up sparring.   He's getting better at defending my NS choke in that I had to do some extra setups to get it once and kept me from doing it several times.  We went over the over/under pass and how to defend it. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

September 13th 2016 - No Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Knee Wedge Guard Break, Straight Footlock, Footlock Defense
Partner: Bhuvana

Always good to cover the straight footlock.  I am getting better with going to single leg x on the ground or I guess it's called ashi garami (not sure if I'm crazy about needing to learn more Japanese names). 

Bhuvana did quite well with the footlock.  We did have to work on the guard break a little.  One suggestion that I made was to think about it like doing the downward dog stretch in yoga.  That made sense to her. 

Rolling: KOTM Closed Guard

For some reason hip bump sweep was working for me today and I spammed it a few times.  Also went for k-guard and had some success with that leading to triangles and omoplatas.  Of course if all else fails guillotines are a no gi staple. 

Office Hours Partner: Justin, Mike

Went over BJ Penn's chair sit in half guard from BJJ Scout video (below).  We both found it very effective in transitioning to mount.  Rolled with Justin a few times and went over the marcelotine version of the guillotine.  He seemed very interested in it. 

Saturday, September 10, 2016

September 10th 2016 - Open Mat

Open Mat
Rolled With: Lucas, David K, Jerad, Craig, Bob, Bhuvana, Justin
Game Plan: Deep Half Sweeping, Grip Fighting

Had a good tough day of rolling.  Still had quite a few people considering it's a Husker football game day.

After a few rolls with Jerad we discussed the path I'm on and how I'm getting better at setting the pace. I need to stay the course so I can roll longer and avoid hitting a wall.

I had several rolls that made my forearms burn from gripping trying to choke or grip fight for sleeves.  David especially gave me trouble here.

Worked Tia Toshi with Bob and I'm feeling pretty good about it. I helped him with basic bottom half and getting the underhook.

Had some success with the NS choke today but also need to research different ways to finish it. Pulled off a few deep half sweeps and attempted the Faria half guard.

Friday, September 9, 2016

September 9th 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Standing RNC Defense to Shoulder Throw, Scissor Sweep, Farside Armbar
Partner: Craig, Ryal

Felt a little sluggish this morning but started to come around after getting thrown a couple times.  Didn't have to give out too many tips.  Mostly focused on the sling shot motion to get them forward for the scissor sweep and to step further behind their back for the farside armbar.

Rolling: Side Control, Guard, Free Rolling
Rolled With: Lucas, Craig, Jesus

Had good rolls with everyone and gave some pointers along the way.  Attack in side control; posture during the standing guard break and pull up on the sleeve; get the grips that you want and go, etc.

Left class again today not feeling like I did enough rolling.  Better make up for it at open mat tomorrow, hopefully there will be enough people there that don't care about football. 

Office Hours Partner: Conan

Worked on a deep half sweep variation that I saw on the Ryan Hall DVD last night that was a little different than I've been practicing it and teaching it.  It's a sweep using the lapels to get to double under pass with a butterfly hook.  He teaches it with the outside foot instead of the inside which even opens them up for a back take after.  I'll have to practice it more but cool minor detail that I glossed over.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

September 8th 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Standing RNC Defense to Shoulder Throw, Scissor Sweep, Farside Armbar
Partner: Phil (New Guy)

Had new guy duty this class and helped Phil through everything.  He was a good student and picked up on things as we went but he was pretty much green as far as positions and basic movements.  I always do my best to make people feel welcome and help them get things to work but also try not to overwhelm them with too much nit-picky instruction (not always easy). 
  • Shoulder Throw RNC Defense: The biggest thing that we worked on for Phil was how to fall.  To point his knees at 90 degrees and keep his chin tucked.
  • Farside Armbar: Had to go over side control and why it's a dominant position.  Then most time was spent on the the turn after the stepover to keep his knee up instead of having it fall under my back.  Also had to tell him to tap when he got to that point of feeling uncomfortable with a technique.  Always remember to do this when working with a new person.
  • Scissor Sweep: He did quite well right away with this.  Worked mostly on pulling the opponent forward to be able to sweep their legs.

Rolling: Side Control, Guard
Rolled With: Phil, Daniel, Ben P, Shane

Walked Phil through escaping side control in between putting a couple of submissions on.  From the bottom a bridge was good enough to allow me to escape the first few times, then I gave him some pointers on lowering his weight and cross facing and he did much better.

Had some good rolls with everyone else from side control and guard.  Did a couple of tricky things to assist with trapping their arm for the standing guard break.  I attempted a few scissor sweeps and some farside armbars. 

Office Hours Partner: Harvey

Worked on some grip breaks with Harvey.  That was about it and no one wanted to stay and roll with me.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

September 7th 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Scissor Sweep, Farside Armbar, Escaping North/South
Partner: Tom

Since there was just Jerad, Tom, and I we didn't spend too much time on the techniques of the week.  What it did turn into was Jerad showing Tom how to beat my north/south choke.  I guess I've finally arrived when a class can be dedicated to beating a part of my game.  I remember several years ago Conan would have a class and say something like "this is how you stop Ray from doing this"  Those classes didn't always help because Ray was going to do what he was going to do, but over a period of time it will help.

I also asked Jerad about his half guard against bigger guys and got some good thoughts on using butterfly half to get to full butterfly rather than using a deep knee shield like I usually like to do.

Rolling: Free Rolling
Rolled With: Jerad, Tom

Had some great rolls with both of them and did some good things.  While I sat out I tried to coach Tom through some of his roll and he said he appreciated it after as he wasn't thinking about some of the things I was saying before I said it, in particular a cross face from top half guard.  Had a close baseball bat choke on Jerad and a decent deep half guard sweep.  Tom gave me the most trouble he ever has in our second roll. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

September 6th 2016 - No Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Side Control: Underhook to Tripod Escape or Half guard, Arm Triangle Choke
Partner: Lucas S

A few interesting things came out of this class.  Greg emphasizes escaping with the underhook to single leg in no-gi over the knee across the belt basic escape that we learn in gi, primarily because it puts you in heel hook position.  I'm trying to think of any other technique that is essential in gi but gets you in trouble in no gi.  Obviously collar chokes or sleeve grips fall into this category.

The other thing was watching how Greg moves his head to get it into position for the arm triangle.  It was similar to the way I work my way into north/south choke.  Once he got the deep cross face and started to put his head on the floor he then shook it back and forth to walk their arm up and get under their elbow.  Also similar to walking an arm up in mount. 

Rolling: Side Control Up/Down/Out

Tried to get a roll in with as many different people as I could.  Mike obviously gave me the most touble and fun rolls.  There were some leg attacks and some deep half battles and a north/south choke that I wasn't quite able to finish.

Ben also did a good job and was really close to securing deep half guard on me and I just squeaked out of it.  I've been where he was though and consider it a part of my deep half growth.  I got into a couple of strangle triangle positions as I was trying to figure it out but eventually figured out where my arms and shoulders need to be at any given time to avoid a back take or triangle.  Great attempt from him though.

Office Hours Partner: Mike

Asked him about leg drags and he showed me a basic setup.  It was better than the one that I had learned previously.  First thing was to kill one leg by pushing it down and using my leg to hold it.  Then using posture and hips to push the foot to the other hips.  That first part was something I was missing in my previous practice with the technique, it kind of reminded me of how I setup the over/under pass.

Had a great fast paced roll after class.  He gave me some kudos for the pace and intensity.  I'm doing better at preventing side control. Some more leg lock attacking from both of us, I was able to granby into a knee bar position, but didn't know how to finish it.  We went round and round a bit more and I ended up in deep half and waiter sweep which went to ankle locks that I wasn't able to defend but should have spun out of while kicking the butt.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

September 3rd 2016 - Open Mat

Open Mat
Rolled With: Bob, Nick, Derek M, Henry
Game Plan: Deep half & omoplatas

Bob and I worked on some foot sweeps and other Judo. I think I made some progress with tia toshi with an underhook.  Then we worked on armbar from mount half drilling half pressure testing.

I had asked Nick about some tips on omoplatas last week and he showed me a few today.  To prevent being stacked he likes to cross his feet at the ankles and extend his legs. I usually keep my legs triangled and try to push on their bicep which allows me to get stacked but this extends my body and makes it very difficult to get put on my back.

Had good tiring rolls with Derek and Henry. Did good things in both rolls.  Played a lot of half guard and tried my best to pace myself. Not sure if I was just having a bad day but I got gassed out with both of them and it makes me question what I can do to prevent that.

For the video of the day check out Bernardo Faria get 30 omoplata submissions in a row at a seminar. A goal to strive for!

Friday, September 2, 2016

September 2nd 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques:  Side Control: Americana, Bridge to Knee in to Recover Guard, Transition to Mount
Students: Jordan, Craig, Steven, Ben, Tim, Jesus, Evan

Got to teach class again and was happy with the turnout on a Friday morning.  Had them do the best case scenario drill (which I need to find a better name for) and Jordan helped me get everyone through it.  I think a few of them realized that they need a game plan for tournaments.

Taught the same techniques as Greg since several people used O-soto gari for their takedown and they looked fine.  Probably the thing I thought people needed the most improvement on was their bridge and hip escape combination, but I think that comes with time.

Rolling: Up/Down/Out Side Control, Free Rolling

Very cool to have enough people to do 3 groups of up/down/out.  Saw a lot of good escapes and transitions to mount.  I played some knee on belly and went for the transition to mount several times.  Got to coach a few people and tried to evenly spread out my comments.  

Office Hours Partner: Jordan

Went over twister side control since it occurred during rolling.  Showed him the position and transitioning to mount and the basic back take.  Mostly emphasized that when he's on the bottom he didn't want to give me his far leg.  We also went over the quarter guard rolling back take as I feel that's an easier technique to learn this movement from.  No one else wanted to stay and roll.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

September 1st 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: Side Control: Americana, Bridge to Knee in to Recover Guard, Transition to Mount
Partner: Bob

I asked Bob to work with me on a foot sweep.  I just wasn't getting it today but he was pretty patient with me and reminded me that's how he feels with ground stuff.  I'll try to get some more reps in tomorrow morning.

Skipped O-soto gari today and went over a transition to mount instead.  This technique was a little different than the version I learned in the past.  To get knee on their belly and passed their defense leg we put a little shoulder pressure with the cross face.  From there we drove the knee all the way to the other side keeping the foot hooked on the thigh.  Then stretch them out to bring their knees down before you put your foot on the floor to complete the mount.

Rolling: Side Mount, Shark Tank
Rolled With: Bob, Brian G, Ben L

Did a lot of side control escaping today and was even able to pull off a few americanas.  People started dropping out of class toward the end to return to work and we ended up with myself, Brian and Ben.  Greg had us do some up/down/out and made sure we all got a chance to be in each position with each partner. 

Apparently I didn't look tired enough so Greg had them shark tank me where I started on the bottom of side control and had to roll until tap out with little rest between rolls.  Had some good rolls with both of them.  I did a decent job of escaping with the knee in guard recovery or getting an under hook to single or deep half.  Then attacked mostly from side control. 

Office Hours Partner: Brian

Worked with Brian a bit on the Japanese necktie.  He was surprised at how uncomplicated it is and didn't feel like he was really doing much to finish it.  We talked with Ben about celebrating the little successes instead of depending on tapping people out as your only form of success.  I told them both that I almost never got my first choice for a submission and had to switch several times to get what I wanted.

August 31st 2016 - Gi All Levels

Theme & Techniques: O-Soto Gari, Side Control: Americana, Bridge to Knee in Escape
Students: Tom, Justin, Lucas

For reference, this is week 1 on the curriculum sheets.  So if you go to a beginner class every week for 21 weeks or until we hit straight ankle lock again you will have worked on all of the techniques you need to know for blue belt.  Might be a good time to start using a note book for BJJ and take some notes every week.

Tips on techniques of the week:
  • O-Soto Gari: Focus more on the upper body stuff, get them off balanced and their weight on the leg you are going to kick out.  
  • Americana: Eliminate as much space as you can while setting this up.  Keep your elbow tight and so they can't do the elbow push escape.
  • Side Control Escape: Big emphasis on keeping the knee high today across their belt line during the pass.  Bridging without using your arms to push away was another important point I was making.

Rolling: Side Control, Free Rolling (Starting from Standing)
Rolled With: Tom, Justin

We did 3 minute rounds round robin and got everyone to roll with everyone.  I was on a mission to get the americana from side mount but was unable to.  It opened up other opportunities that I took, but I may need to reevaluate and figure out how to lock this down.  It's an easy technique to teach and learn but I think setting it up is difficult because everyone knows about it.

In our free rolling since there was just 3 of us I asked if everyone wanted to start standing up for 5 minute rounds.  It was good as I haven't done it in a while.  I think I'll try to talk Jerad into more stand-up on Wednesdays since there's usually a lot of room to work.  Had some good rolls and we all put in some good work.